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    OIC chief to visit Sri Lanka Featured

    September 30, 2014

    The head of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) will visit Sri Lanka on an invitation from Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa, Arab News said quoting  a senior official from the Sri Lankan Embassy. Iyad Madani, OIC Secretary-General, is due to visit the country shortly.

     

    “This is the first time such a visit is being made to Sri Lanka and we are really proud of it,” the official said, pointing out that an advance team will go to Colombo shortly to make preparatory arrangements for Madani’s visit. Sri Lanka has applied for observer status in the OIC.

     

    Last month, the island’s ambassador, Mohamed Hussein Mohamed, met Madani in Jeddah to discuss the program for the Secretary General’s visit to Colombo.


    The four-member delegation from the OIC is expected to chalk out the program in coordination with the ministry of External Affairs in Colombo.

     

    Meanhwhile, on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly session in New York, when Madani met Sri  Lankan President Rajapaksa on Thursday, the President  said that with the election of Madani to the office of the OIC Secretary-General, Sri Lanka hopes to facilitate greater collaboration and cooperation between OIC countries. Madani took over as Secretary-General in January 2014.

     

    “We don’t consider Sri Lanka as outside the OIC,” Madani told President Rajapaksa. Appreciating the ‘pioneering steps’ the president has taken, Madani said that the OIC has “continuous admiration” for Sri Lanka and looks forward to helping the country enhance relations with the 56-member body.

     

    The president has also encouraged Madani and other OIC member countries to visit Sri Lanka to see for themselves the reality on the ground and how many diverse communities coexist peacefully in the country. (KH)

    Last modified on Tuesday, 30 September 2014 09:16

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